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Old 31-07-2021, 03:14   #1
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Buying a Yacht - Maintenance Records

I'm helping a friend buy a yacht - an almost 70' vessel for sale at over $1.5 million U. S.

We like the boat, which is about 12 years old but looks good and seems well maintained.

However, we can't get even most elementary information about repairs and replacements over the years on this boat. The U. K. based broker says, basically, the info in the 3 page sales brochure is all you get. She looks pretty, so what is there to worry about?

I received a full maintenance log on my boat when I was buying her, and when I was looking at Oysters, I was always offered copious maintenance records before I made an offer.

This seems just weird to me, or have practices changed?
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Old 31-07-2021, 04:10   #2
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Re: Buying a Yacht - Maintenance Records

Dockhead I think it depends on the owner. For me it's a rare owner that has a detailed maintenance log. I am not sure if it's because we're all so busy or if the demise of the written word has caused it?
I was just joking the other day about inventing an App that lets your car text you when it's next service is due. Even better if the car breaks down it can self diagnose the issue and text you. It wouldn't be hard to transfer this technology to a boat.
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Old 31-07-2021, 06:15   #3
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Re: Buying a Yacht - Maintenance Records

"I was just joking the other day about inventing an App that lets your car text you when it's next service is due". Had to chuckle, my truck sends me a weekly report of it's status, even when an oil change is due based on hydrocarbon levels. My boat tells me enough just by being on it. I think the last thing I would want is to get a text in the middle of the night saying all the injectors are going to start leaking tomorrow!
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Old 31-07-2021, 06:27   #4
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pirate Re: Buying a Yacht - Maintenance Records

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fore and Aft View Post
Dockhead I think it depends on the owner. For me it's a rare owner that has a detailed maintenance log. I am not sure if it's because we're all so busy or if the demise of the written word has caused it?
I was just joking the other day about inventing an App that lets your car text you when it's next service is due. Even better if the car breaks down it can self diagnose the issue and text you. It wouldn't be hard to transfer this technology to a boat.
Cheers
I agree.. I have sailed with owners who log everything that happens from course changes, weather, engine hours and oil levels each time its switched off and others who like me just keep receipts for items/work done.. for a while..
I view it as an OCD trait in many case's..
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Old 31-07-2021, 07:18   #5
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Re: Buying a Yacht - Maintenance Records

Yes, it all depends on the owner, is he/she meticulous or just too impatient to document what has been done as they go along.

But there are a couple of tips which we could follow to help the next owner (and more often, ourselves if our memory does not serve) which take almost no time and just a little self discipline.

This does not solve the OP's problem, you can't (or couldn't) go back after the fact, but going forward, in a world where we seem to have lost a lot of skills, it would serve.
  1. Keep the receipts (if any). Just put them into a file in chronological order.
  2. Write it in the log they day you do it, not a lot of detail, just a note with the date. Important: try to normalize the the subject of the note.
  3. Digitize (periodically) your log. I do it about twice a year. I just scan the log book pages but I add meta-data tags for the maintenance, repairs, and failures. This makes it searchable. For example, if I search the scanned logs for "Alternator belts" the result is all the log pages on which that tag occurs.
  4. Post the scanned images as blog posts

No custom data base, no spreadsheet, not much self discipline required, you don't have to be anal, yet it works, in a very basic but serviceable way. See this example Log Book Pages

The actual pages are on the left, the index on the right takes you to all of the entries for any subject.
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Old 31-07-2021, 07:26   #6
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Re: Buying a Yacht - Maintenance Records

I've seen too many fraudulent maintenance records in the collector car hobby to trust any of them and there is no reason to assume boat owners are any different.
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Old 31-07-2021, 07:41   #7
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Re: Buying a Yacht - Maintenance Records

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post

We like the boat, which is about 12 years old but looks good and seems well maintained.

However, we can't get even most elementary information about repairs and replacements over the years on this boat. The U. K. based broker says, basically, the info in the 3 page sales brochure is all you get. She looks pretty, so what is there to worry about?

I received a full maintenance log on my boat when I was buying her, and when I was looking at Oysters, I was always offered copious maintenance records before I made an offer.

This seems just weird to me, or have practices changed?
Why make maintenance record and wasting time.for later sale yacht,maybe is better skip this potential customer who ask for maintenance records
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Old 31-07-2021, 07:45   #8
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Re: Buying a Yacht - Maintenance Records

Pretty simple really.
Standing rigging, replace if it's original.
Running rigging, replace if original.
Sails, replace if original.
Instrumentation, replace if original.
Engine hours, major rebuild or replace after 8,000 hours.
Hull, deck and spars, repaint if original.
Interior cushions, replace if original.
You get the drift...

Get quotes for all of the above and subtract from your offer. Twelve years is the life for many of these items.
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Old 31-07-2021, 08:19   #9
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Re: Buying a Yacht - Maintenance Records

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joli View Post
Pretty simple really.
Standing rigging, replace if it's original.
Running rigging, replace if original.
Sails, replace if original.
Instrumentation, replace if original.
Engine hours, major rebuild or replace after 8,000 hours.
Hull, deck and spars, repaint if original.
Interior cushions, replace if original.
You get the drift...

Get quotes for all of the above and subtract from your offer. Twelve years is the life for many of these items.
¸
or Dockhead can order new yacht and wait 12-24 month for delivery and check all this in your list and more.
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Old 31-07-2021, 09:12   #10
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Re: Buying a Yacht - Maintenance Records

The only log book I ever kept was for the engine. A survey and engine inspection, including a compression test, should tell you all you want to know about the current condition of the yacht.
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Old 31-07-2021, 10:12   #11
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Re: Buying a Yacht - Maintenance Records

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Why make maintenance record and wasting time.for later sale yacht,maybe is better skip this potential customer who ask for maintenance records

I think the lack of any maintenance records would result, on average, lower market prices for those vessels. I know I would certainly not buy any boat where little or no maintenance was recorded.

It's easy to do, I don't mess with computer databases - the time and effort to do that would discourage me from making entries. I just have a handwritten log where if I do something like install new waterpump, even change oil or impellor on generator or main engine, I immediately write a clear and readable one-liner in that log with the date. It takes all of 30 seconds. How hard is that?

I keep receipts for major items and also make log entries for those.

A boat with no maintenance log clearly tells me that skipper/owner is probably careless about doing normal maintenance.
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Old 31-07-2021, 10:20   #12
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Re: Buying a Yacht - Maintenance Records

Quote:
Originally Posted by waterman46 View Post
I think the lack of any maintenance records would result, on average, lower market prices for those vessels. I know I would certainly not buy any boat where little or no maintenance was recorded.

It's easy to do, I don't mess with computer databases - the time and effort to do that would discourage me from making entries. I just have a handwritten log where if I do something like install new waterpump, even change oil or impellor on generator or main engine, I immediately write a clear and readable one-liner in that log with the date. It takes all of 30 seconds. How hard is that?

I keep receipts for major items and also make log entries for those.

A boat with no maintenance log clearly tells me that skipper/owner is probably careless about doing normal maintenance.
Exactly
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Old 31-07-2021, 10:35   #13
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Re: Buying a Yacht - Maintenance Records

Quote:
Originally Posted by waterman46 View Post
I think the lack of any maintenance records would result, on average, lower market prices for those vessels. I know I would certainly not buy any boat where little or no maintenance was recorded.

It's easy to do, I don't mess with computer databases - the time and effort to do that would discourage me from making entries. I just have a handwritten log where if I do something like install new waterpump, even change oil or impellor on generator or main engine, I immediately write a clear and readable one-liner in that log with the date. It takes all of 30 seconds. How hard is that?

I keep receipts for major items and also make log entries for those.

A boat with no maintenance log clearly tells me that skipper/owner is probably careless about doing normal maintenance.
Yes, of course, your one-liner in the log book makes perfect sense. However, flipping through all the log book entries to find out when you last checked the rigging wires might be a pain. IF however, you could make those log entries searchable, then it's accessible and easier.
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Old 31-07-2021, 10:41   #14
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Re: Buying a Yacht - Maintenance Records

When I bought my boat 2 years ago there were no organized receipt records unless you call years of folders filled with purchase/work receipts organized. I have set up my own record keeping system organized by boat system. It is very simple with only a date column and a large column to record what work was done.


There is an advantage to not having records which is the in-depth knowledge you gain from crawling around inside the systems. I suppose that anyone with the money for a boat like you describe probably has enough money to pay someone else to do both the work and the record keeping.


As it is, a very good surveyor would seem to be your best friend at this point, whom you should hire anyway, regardless of the presence or absence of records.
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Old 31-07-2021, 15:09   #15
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Re: Buying a Yacht - Maintenance Records

Quote:
Originally Posted by waterman46 View Post
I think the lack of any maintenance records would result, on average, lower market prices for those vessels. I know I would certainly not buy any boat where little or no maintenance was recorded.

It's easy to do, I don't mess with computer databases - the time and effort to do that would discourage me from making entries. I just have a handwritten log where if I do something like install new waterpump, even change oil or impellor on generator or main engine, I immediately write a clear and readable one-liner in that log with the date. It takes all of 30 seconds. How hard is that?

I keep receipts for major items and also make log entries for those.

A boat with no maintenance log clearly tells me that skipper/owner is probably careless about doing normal maintenance.
Ok i make maintenance records for the last 10 year only for you. wait i must go in shop buying 10 difrent pen. what you like see inside what equipment you want sea i change.

A boat with a maintenance log clearly tells me that the skipper/owner has a problem in life and he is or rich or amateur.
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